by Vendee Globe
In the Vendee Globe, Jean-Pierre Dick’s (Virbac Paprec 3) loss is Alex Thomson’s (Hugo Boss) gain. Dick’s decision to dip south away from the theoretical and shortest route, gambling that he will gain miles on the winds gradually shifting to the west in order to propel him to the Cape of Good Hope has meant that Thomson has slipped into third place. However, 33 miles behind is Bernard Stamm (Cheminées Poujoulat) breathing down his neck.
Alex Thomson, Hugo Boss - 2012 Vendee Globe
Last night was very complicated for François Gabart (Macif) he is now than 150 miles behind the Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire), who is still leading the charge. In the fickle winds in the southern hemisphere, the front runners navigate through the compressing depression off the coast of Argentina.
François Gabart (Macif) was busy on onboard with many manoeuvres and constant adjustments in attempt to eradicate the calm of the night. The more easterly, Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire), was obviously much luckier. He is sailing on a trajectory very close to the theoretical direct route (the famous great circle – the shortest route around the globe), he travelled 127 miles since the last ranking (at 2000 UTC) last night.
Behind the leading pack is the senior sailors of the fleet (Golding, Le Cam, Wavre) who remain locked in a ménage a trois. The once speedy gains of the talking Brit hunting comedic Frenchman Jean Le Cam (SynerCiel) seems to be very slow this morning as he approaches the ridge of the Argentinian depression, and is now further south than Mike Golding (Gamesa) and gambling alongside Jean-Pierre Dick’s (Virbac Paprec 3) that this will pay out in the long-term. Dominique Wavre (Mirabaud) 117.7 miles behind, also, appears to have elected to take the more southerly path.
At nearly 800 miles from the leader, the group led by the late Javier Sanso (Acciona 100% EcoPowered) is enjoying the 15 knot easterly winds reaching for 300 miles in ambient conditions.
'The perfect night! After an impeccable sunset the cloud colour was extra-ordinary. The night is lifted and the moon shines bright almost full and illuminates the bridge almost like daylight! The sea is calm, the boat glides effortlessly at 11 knots and it is good I ate outside leaning against the fleet 500 to watch the clouds over the moon, what happiness! I'll sleep a little, but I hope the show will continue when I wake up in an hour and a half. Sweet dreams. See you tomorrow,' Tanguy de Lamotte (Initiatives cœur) confided in a message last night.
After a diabolical Doldrums Arnaud Bossières (Akena Verandas) is on the tail of Tanguy de Lamotte (Initiatives cœur) wanting to take his newly acquired 10th place for himself. A 1026 miles from the leader, Bertrand De Broc (Votre Nom Autour du Monde with EDM) also benefited from the fine conditions, covering 305 miles in the last 24 hours. Bringing up the rear the sea gardener Alessandro Di Benedetto (Team Plastique) continues his adventure of a lifetime 1250.6 miles from the front.
Vendee Globe website